“If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you” (Matthew 17:20).
Do you know that you have a preferred style of being? You have an established method or orientation to the way that you think, behave, and relate to others. Most of this happens in the unconscious places. We often are not aware of ourselves. Most of what we do is an automatic response with roots in another place or time; an earlier place in our lives where the belief that forms the action began. Our lives are a series, or collection, of these beliefs turned into actions. It is our life experiences that shape our thoughts and attitudes, which in turn shape and drive our behavior. I call this our modus operandi for getting through life. We all have an m.o. whether or not we recognize it. This is what I have come to understand, and refer to, as “the mountain”. When Jesus said we could move mountains by faith, I believe He was primarily talking about us. He was talking about the process of personal growth and change – difficult, but not impossible.
Anything is possible for those who believe.
Now, desirable is a different story. Human beings are closed systems. This is what one of my instructors taught me in a professional development course on organizational behavior. This means we are not naturally open to the influence of others. You’ve heard the expression “set in stone”. We are fairly set in our ways. We don’t really like change all that much. Change feels foreign to us. It is scary. It can be exciting on some levels, and some are more adventurous in this regard. But, generally speaking, we prefer the known over the unknown – even if we are dissatisfied in life. We are usually not aware of the ways in which we contribute to our own misery either. It’s all been formed and set together in one massive, mountainous heap. We are who we are, lumps and all. It is here that I would like to point out what Jesus did not say in that passage. Jesus did not say anything about asking the mountain first if it wanted to be moved. I am pretty sure the mountain would have answered that it is most comfortable right where it is. When we understand the mountain as ourselves, the prospect of change both excites and terrifies us if we are honest.
So, how do we move forward in faith? How do we really open ourselves to the God who both excites and terrifies us in His proposal for change? These are the questions I am mulling over today. I have been grappling with this concept of the mountain being me for the last 10 years. I’ve wrestled with the process of change in my own life, and I believe God has called me to wrestle in these places with other women. My challenge has been getting past myself to walk in this calling I have received. I believe I am nearing a time when that is going to become my reality, which is both exciting and terrifying. But God has been faithful in moving me out of the comfortable places. I am out there, in the terrifying unknown. This blog testifies to that very fact.
Just like an addict, the first step is admission. When we can say, “Hello, I am a mountain….help me, Jesus!” we are ready to embark on a journey. We are ready to face ourselves before Him, to get past our past and walk in the newness of life He gives. This is a milestone, although it can feel like a millstone strapped onto our backs. Faith ultimately lightens our load if we are willing to “go there”.
I would like to hear from you on this. Where are you today? How aware are you of your mountain? How willing are you to let God change the ways you have been, and trust Him to make you who you are becoming in Him?
I am considering beginning a Faith Miner’s Daughter small group. If I did, would you consider becoming a part of it? If so, I’d love to hear from you.
Click the link for a look at what our mountain is made of: http://www.robynterry.com/the-mountain/